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TitleSection 94
Publication TypeBook Chapter
Year of Publication2021
AuthorsHarper, Steven C.
Book TitleDoctrine and Covenants Contexts
PublisherBook of Mormon Central
CitySpringville, UT

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Section 94 may make more sense after you have studied sections 95, 96, and 97, because it was actually revealed right after section 97, though for many years it was misdated and thus misplaced. It makes the most sense when it is read as an extension of section 97.[1] It addresses similar concerns as section 97 and says that the Lord had already revealed the pattern for the House of the Lord in Kirtland, which he did in section 95.

In section 97 the Lord required the Saints in Missouri to build a temple. In section 94 he commands the Saints in Ohio to build a stake to Zion, beginning with another temple in Ohio, as commanded in section 88 and again in section 95. The Lord calls for the construction of an office for the First Presidency next to the temple in Kirtland, Ohio. He specifies its design and the conditions on which he will abide there. On the next lot south the Lord wants a printing office, perhaps to replace the Church’s press destroyed by a mob just a few days earlier in Missouri (unbeknownst to Joseph). The members of the Church’s building committee—Hyrum Smith, Reynolds Cahoon, and Jared Carter—are appointed lots or “inheritances” near the building sites. Verse 16 is not in the early manuscripts. Joseph probably added it as clarification before the revelation was published in the 1835 Doctrine and Covenants.

In the letter to Missouri Church leaders that included section 94, the First Presidency explained that the Saints in Zion should build similar buildings for meetings and printing the scriptures.[2] But the Saints in Zion were already being forced from their land and homes, and Saints in Kirtland struggled to muster enough resources to build the temple. They eventually scaled down the instructions in section 94, built one building instead of two, and used it as a printing office, a school, and office space for the First Presidency.

[1]Revelation, 2 August 1833–B [D&C 94],” p. 64, The Joseph Smith Papers, accessed July 9, 2020.

[2]Letter to Church Leaders in Jackson County, Missouri, 6 August 1833,” p. [1], The Joseph Smith Papers, accessed July 9, 2020.



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